Lalit Modi Row: Cong Meets Prez, Demands Action Against Raje

New Delhi
Lalit Modi Row: Cong Meets Prez, Demands Action Against Raje

Upping the ante on Lalit Modi controversy, Congress today sought President Pranab Mukherjee's intervention and demanded the resignation of Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje saying her continuance has become "untenable".

Accusing Raje of her "direct involvement" in helping a fugitive, AICC general secretary in-charge for Rajasthan Gurdas Kamat also attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying why the Prime Minister, who had given a slogan of corruption free India, failed to act against Raje.

The delegation consisting over two dozen Congress leaders from Rajasthan, led by Kamat, met Mukherjee here.

After the meeting, Kamat said Congress is hopeful that action will follow against Raje as during the meeting they have made a "fervent appeal" for action against her.

Alleging that Raje's involvement in "facilitating" travel documents to former IPL Chairman was a "proven fact", Rajasthan Congress chief Sachin Pilot said, "We have given a written petition to the President seeking immediate sacking of the chief minister as she has committed various offences and impropriety with regard to her official dealings."

He said while Raje was the Leader of Opposition during Congress regime, she had given an affidavit in court in support of former IPL boss, who is alleged to have violated rules of ED, FERA and FEMA.

Claiming that Raje, as an MLA, had given a written affidavit in support of someone who had violated Indian law, Pilot said, to help, support and submit the affidavit in the foreign court for someone who has transgressed Indian laws... we believe that it is criminality.

"I believe the Rajasthan CM should have resigned by now because constitutionally, legally, and morally, she cannot change her position," he said.

Recalling Modi's Lok Sabha poll pitch of "Na Khaoonga Na Khaane Doonga (Neither I will engage in corruption nor will I allow anybody to do so), former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said the Prime Minister was now keeping "silent" while Raje was "running away" from the media.

AICC general secretary C P Joshi, Leader of Opposition in Rajasthan, Rameshwar Dudi, former Union Minister Namo Narayan Meena Congress MLAs, and other party office bearers also accompanied the delegation.

The delegation, which spent over 15 minutes with the President, rued that despite passage of more than a month since they met him, no action has followed against Raje.

Raje came under fire after Lalit Modi's lawyers last month released a set of unsigned papers which they claimed were a secret witness document by the Rajasthan Chief Minister favouring his immigration pleas in a London court.

As per the documents, Raje wanted to appear as a witness on condition that Indian authorities were not told about it.

Also under attack was Raje's son, Dushyant Singh, after reports emerged that his company allegedly received Rs 11.63 crore in investments from Lalit Modi in 2008.

Congress also attacked Raje citing media reports that Lalit Modi's name was recommended for Padma award during her previous tenure in 2007.

In the petition, Congress said Raje had concealed the fact that she wrote an affidavit in favour of Lalit Modi by asking not to disclose its content and this very matter was revealed by the former IPL commissioner, which is a "betrayal" to the nation.

"There are other allegations against her which included corruption and declaring ownership of government property to her name, and such allegations are proved," Pilot claimed, adding that such acts have ended her rights, constitutionally and morally, to stay and continue as Chief Minister.

Rajasthan Congress had earlier submitted a similar memorandum to Governor Kalyan Singh on July 9.

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